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Archives for January, 2010

A Trio of Very Boro Sakabukuro or Sake “Filters”

January 4, 2010

What a wonderful group of three heavily stitched and mended sakabukuro or the persimmon tannin dipped, cotton bags that were used to filter raw sake during the sake-making process.


I will be offering each of these for sale on my website this Wednesday, 6 January, starting 10 AM, New York time.


Before modern sake making techniques were widespread in Japan, probably during the first half of last century and earlier, crude sake, or sake lees, were poured into these bags which would be pressed to force out the filtered liquid.  Obviously the bags were used time and again and they suffered damage from use: this is the reason for of the intensive mending seen on these bags.


These three are really nice ones because of their mending; I had them stashed away for a while, but I just brought them out and decided to offer them for sale.

The bags on the left and right were constructed with machine stitching; the intensive. almost three-dimensional,  patching and stitching is all done by hand.


I hope you enjoy looking at these photos–and if any of these is of interest to you, check the [email protected] section of my website on or after January 6.

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“Serizawa: Master of Japanese Textile Design” at Japan Society, New York until January 17

January 2, 2010

The work of Japan’s titan of 20th century textile design, the highly esteemed Keisuke Serizawa (1895 – 1984), is the subject of a thoughtful and comprehensive exhibition on view at Japan Society, New York, until January 17.

Serizawa, who was designated a National Living Treasure by the Japanese government in 1956 for his original katazome design and dyeing, was associated with the Mingei “movement” which was founded in the 1920s in order to elevate the appreciation of anonymous works of folk art toward a higher level of consideration.

Serizawa was and still is very influential to artists and designers in Japan and around the world, and this exhibition offers a rare opportunity to view a rich spectrum of his work–one hundred pieces in total–from early examples to works he accomplished later in his life.

See a slide show of a selection of works currently on view at the Japan Society here.


And here is practical information for visiting the exhibition:

Japan Society
333 East 47th Street New York, NY 10017 Phone: 212.832.1155

Gallery hours:
Tuesday through Thursday 11 am – 6 pm
Friday 11 am – 9 pm
Saturday & Sunday 11 am – 5 pm
The gallery is closed on Mondays and major holidays (Nov. 26, Dec 25, Jan 1).

$10; students & seniors $8;
Japan Society members and children under 16 FREE.
Admission is FREE to all on Friday nights , 6-9 PM.
(except for Nov. 27, day after Thanksgiving)

If you are unable to see the show, you may consider acquiring the catalogue, which is available here.

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